CHALMETTE, LA (WVUE) - A sweet treat from south Louisiana is headed to America's brave servicemen and women overseas.
At Randazzo's Camellia City Bakery king cakes served up in red white and blue. Over 300 are going to the troops overseas all because of "Operation We Care."
They're cooking up the king cakes today. Packing them up and sending them out.
Behind the effort is Colleen Smith.
This is the 14th year a taste of Carnival has been shared overseas.
"They absolutely love the king cakes we get emails and postcards back saying thank you so much," Smith said. "It's wonderful to share with their friends and they share and they really enjoyed it."
Smith said the king cakes are a little taste of home and help the troops remember the Mardi Gras celebration happening at home.
The process is like clockwork. There are approximately 25 volunteers packing boxes.
"This is a labor of love and we love it we enjoy coming," Smith said. "We love taking care of our troops and just doing a little something special just for them."
There is some sort of packaging effort every month.
"It is every month we send out packages and we get together and box them up and send them," Smith said. "But Mardi Gras is a little bit special because they get something different. We have the boxes decorated by students at Cypress Cove Elementary this year.
The operations started in July of 2003 when the mother of a serviceman -- Cherise Stevens -- started "Operation We Care.
Stevens' son went overseas and asked him if his friends were getting packages.
The answer was "no."
Stevens organized an effort to send over 28,000 care packages. Over $300,000 in postage was donated to the effort.